best styling gel for black women's hair

12 Best Styling Gel for Black Women’s Hair 2023 | For Edges, 4c, And Natural Hair

Find out the best styling gel for black women’s hair and how to use styling gel on natural hair. Also read reviews about the Eco Styler gel and other products for natural 4c hair.

So you’ve decided to ditch the silk press and finally embrace your natural curls. What you need now is the best styling gel for black women’s hair.

But wait? What hairstyle should you choose? And how do you get that mane under control?

Ughhhh. Should you just reach for the straightener again? Get your hair relaxed?

No, we think not. Black women’s hair is a beauty. The beautiful curls, the kinky Afro – it all shows a uniqueness that can’t be matched. 

Related: Best Scalp Moisturizers For Black Hair

Related: Best Anti-Frizz Serums For African American Hair

If you want to wear your natural hair with pride, you have to invest some time and energy to take care of it.

Afro hair can be difficult to style and even more tricky to keep it that way. 

Curly hair is more prone to frizz, dryness, and breakage.

In this case, the best styling gel for black women’s hair becomes your best friend. 

Styling Gel For Black Women’s HairBest ForChief Ingredients
Mixed Chicks Styling GelType 3 Textured HairAmino acids, Panthenol, Lavender, Chamomile, Rosemary, Thyme and Witch Haze
Kinky Curly Curling Custard Gel4c Textured HairAloe Vera, Horsetail, Chamomile, Nettle And Marshmallow
tgin Rose Water Defining Styling GelWater-based GelOlive Oil, Rose Water, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein
Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Heat & Humidity GelClimate Control GelShea Butter, Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Matricaria, Henna, Kiwi Extracts
ECOCO Eco Styler Gel Best OverallHydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Olive Oil
Curls Blueberry Bliss Curl Control JellyNon-Water Based GelHydrogenated Castor Oil, Blueberry, Aloe Vera, Keratin, Quinoa, Argan Oil
Design Essentials Sleek Edge ControlEdge ControlHydrogenated Castor Oil, Glycerin
Tailiah Waajid Tight Hold Loc It Up GelStrong HoldYarrow Root, Rosemary, Nettle Extracts
Mielle Organics Honey & Ginger Styling GelOrganic GelHoney, Ginger, Aloe Extract And Babassu Oil
Aunt Jackie’s Flaxseed Elongating Curling GelShrinkageHydrolyzed Wheat Protein, Flaxseed
Hicks Edge Control GelTapered CutsHydrogenated Castor Oil
Briogeo Curl Charisma Frizz Control GelFrizzy HairQuinoa Extract And Keratin Amino Acids

Whatever your hairstyling needs might be, there is a hair gel for that. But the trick is to find the right one!

Not to worry – We’ve rounded up ten of the best styling gel for black women’s hair.

How I tested the top styling gel for black women’s hair?

I have 4c coily hair so to test these products I first used them myself. After which I rated them on a scale of 1-5 based on certain parameters. These include:

  • Holding Power – A good styling gel should be able to hold your hairstyles well and keep your curls well defined without making them crunchy.
  • Moisturization – I know, I know a styling gel only helps define curls and edges but black women’s hair needs all the moisture it can get and I love a 2-in-product that hydrates and styles hair too.
  • Ingredients – Type 4 hair is more prone to dryness and damage so I looked if the styling gel contains any harsh ingredients such as alcohol, added perfumes, dimethicone, etc.

Top Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair 2023

Mixed Chicks Styling Gel

Best Gel For Slicking Back Natural Hair

Best Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair

I believe the best styling gel for black women’s hair should take care of different types of textures.

That’s why we’ve I tested out the Mixed Chicks Styling gel as it claimed to cater to both type-3 and type 4 hair.

As the name suggests, this one’s for all the mixed chicks out there. I really loved the formulation. It is super strong! Even if you squeeze out a pea-sized amount, you’re good to go. This is a relief because the Mixed Chicks Styling gel is slightly on the expensive side.

So I was glad I didn’t have to exhaust it in one go.

I also loved the ingredients in this styling gel, especially the inclusion of emmolients like glycerin as they keep my curls moisturized without leaving them greasy like some heavy butter-based products do.

So if you’re looking for volume, you’ve got to try this product. 

Also, the rosemary and lavender scent is completely natural and simply lovely. So bonus points for that!

This styling kept my hair soft and nourished while providing a firm hold for a long time. And the best part is that it didn’t flake or leave residue on my hair.

styling gels for curly 4c hair

Even though the name says “mixed girls” a lot of women find that this gel is suitable for 3b and 3c textured hair as well. It just gives a lighter hold, that’s all. 


  • Provides curl definition on different hair textures l
  • Helps holds hair in place as it’s got a strong hold
  • The glycerin-based formula is hydrating but not too rich
  • The product is not tested on animals
  • The fragrance is from natural essential oils and not added perfumes


  • None that I could find

My Ratings:

  • Holding Power – 4/5
  • Moisturization – 3.5/5
  • Ingredients – 4.5/5

Kinky Curly Curling Custard Gel

Best Moisturizing Gel For 4c Hair

best styling gel for black hair

I had been dealing with a lot of frizz lately and wanted something to take care of this issue when I found this Kinky Curly Custard.

I had high hopes for this product as it’s supposed to eliminate frizz instantly while being silicone-free at the same time.

However, I was a bit disappointed with the formula after using it.

best gel for natural hair 4c

I liked the water-based formula that uses aloe vera and vitamin E to hydrate hair instead of rich butters or emollients. However, I felt that this wasn’t moisturizing enough for my 4c curls.

My hair looked really crunchy and dry after using it for a bit. Maybe if you have a less coily hair texture or greasy hai this formulation would be suited to you. But it didn’t work on my hair.

If you really wanted to use this product, I suggest layering with a heavy moisturizer or using it to try out twists, Bantu knots, or other such styles as it keeps frizzy hair at bay and provides a firm hold that lasts for long.

See also  5 Amazing Beeswax Benefits For Hair 2023 | Uses, DIY And More

Plus, it’s so lightweight, it doesn’t leave your hair greasy. But that’s the only good thing I can say about this gel.

While it doesn’t leave residue on hair thankfully due to the silicone-free formula, it did leave my curls crunchy. Yes, even after I used it with water!

Also, the added perfume was a tad disappointing. But nothing irritated me more than the price tag. I paid almost double for 8 fl. oz of this product that I did for Mixed Chicks Styling Gel.


  • Enhances your natural curls as it gives a strong hold
  • The aloe vera-based formula hydrates hair and prevents frizz
  • Gives your hair great bounce and volume as formula is lightweight
  • No parabens are present in the gel so it’s safe for your health


  • Very little product offered for a very large price tag
  • The formula can leave hair sticky and weighed down if used incorrectly
  • Not moisturizing enough for 4c hair
  • Contains added perfume that can dry hair and be unsuited for sensitive scalps

My Ratings:

  • Holding Power – 5/5
  • Moisturization – 3.5/5
  • Ingredients – 4/5

tgin Rose Water Defining Styling Gel

Best Water-Based Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair

best gel for natural hair 4c

I have always used the leave-in conditioner by Tgin and it’s worked fantastically for my hair for so long. So naturally I was excited to try this product.

However, I felt it was a sort of hit and miss.

I mean there are many things I like about this styling gel. I love how it’s free of alcohol, silicones, parabens, and other ingredients that can either dry out your tresses or leave them flaky.

But at the same time, I’m not too much of a fan of the perfume in the formula. I don’t like added fragrances on my hair and this one didn’t smell too good either – very synthetic and fruity.

When I used this gel on my wet hair after applying conditioner and cream (I learned my lesson with the Kinky Curly Custard) I found it did leave my curls well-defined.

However, on using it multiple times, I found it can leave hair stringy. So I suggest cutting down on the product or only using it once a week or something.

I also have to warn you it doesn’t really mix well with creams. So make sure you don’t apply it before a cream or immediately after. You will end up with clumps. 


  •  Produces high definition curls as it gives hair a strong hold
  • Boosts volume as the water-based formula is lightweight
  • The lightweight formula is suited for low porosity 4c hair
  • No animal testing and artificial colors or parabens in the product
  • There’s no silicones here so you won’t see much product buildup


  • Contains added perfume and has a strong fruity smell
  • Does not mix well with creams
  • Can cause curls to become stringy if used often

My Ratings:

  • Holding Power – 3.5/5
  • Moisturization – 4/5
  • Ingredients – 4/5

Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Heat & Humidity Gel

Best Climate-Control Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair

best gel for slicking back natural hair

If you’re looking for a product to protect your curls as well as your hair color, then I suggest using the Ouidad Advanced Climate Control Heat & Humidity Gel is the perfect pick for you.

I love how it keeps the frizz at bay on my hair as soon as I apply it. Also, it also comes with a UV and heat filter that protects my locks from losing their sheen. So I really like using this product when I’m coloring my hair.

The protein-rich gel helps seal the hair cuticle, giving you amazing curl definition and leaving your tresses smooth.

I also think this is one of the best styling gel for black women’s hair if you live in a high humidity area. 

As much as Iliked what this gel did for color-treated hair, we were disappointed in one area. Alcohol!

Yes, the formulation contains alcohol and can be a bit drying. I highly recommend using a moisturizing cream before using this one.


  • Can use during any climate
  • Best suited for all curl types
  • Makes hair healthier and shinier
  • Reduces hair tangles and porosity.
  • Anti frizz technology for high definition curls


  • Contains alcohol causing dryness.

·     The gel consistency is crunchy.

ECOCO Eco Styling Gel

Best Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair Overall

best gel for 4c hair sleek ponytail

There are three reasons why I think the Ecoco Eco Styler Gel is perhaps the best styling gel for black women’s hair.

One, it’s got a nourishing formula that doesn’t dry out your curls. Two, it gives an amazingly strong hold. And three, it’s super affordable.

What’s not to love?

best eco styler gel for 4c natural hair

The formulation comes packed with olive oil, hydrolyzed wheat protein, and glycerin – all of which keep my hair shiny and moisturized.

Plus, it has an alcohol-free formula too! 

I also loved how this styling gel works on multiple hair textures. Type 2, type 3, type 4 – if you’ve it, this gel will style it! 

A little heads up. Wash off this styling gel within 2-3 days of using it. If you leave it on for too long, the product build-up starts to flake. 


  • Can use during any climate
  •  Best suited for all curl types
  • Makes hair healthier and shinier
  • Reduces hair tangles and porosity.
  • Anti frizz technology for high definition curls


  • Contains alcohol causing dryness.
  • The gel consistency is slimy and leaves flakes on hair

Curls Blueberry Bliss Curl Control Jelly

Best Non Water-based Hair Gel

best styling gel for black hair

Okay. So technically speaking, this product is not a gel but a jelly. But hey, it works the same (and even better if I might add) as a hair styling gel. So why not? 

If you have high-porosity hair with a very fine texture, the Curls Blueberry Bliss Jelly might be the best option for you.

The formulation contains aloe vera extracts, hydrogenated castor oil, and quinoa extracts that define curls and reduce frizz. This is great for hair that loses it’s moisture easily as the aloe vera adds moisture to it while the castor oil formula helps prevent this moisture’s loss from hair.

best strong hold hair gel for natural hair

This jelly is amazing for different hair textures too. So you

As it doesn’t cause a lot of product build-up and still provides a strong hold, it’s perfect for type 2, 3, and even type 4 hair.

And I absolutely adore the fragrance it leaves behind too. 

However, this might be a problem for some as the fragrance is due to added perfumes and can trigger sensitive scalps. So be careful!

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  • Fragrant blueberry and fruity scents
  • Holds curls up well in place as it’s got a strong hold
  • Prevents hair breakage and damage
  • Blueberries contain Vitamins C and B complex that increases hair    growth
  • No artificial colors and cruelty free formulation


  • Small quantity given for the price tag
  • Using it too often can make your hair too dry and flaky

Design Essentials Sleek Edge Control

Best Edge Control Gel

best styling gel for fine hair female

I honestly believe that the best hairstyles can end up looking terrible if your edges aren’t laid well. Any regular gel can leave them crunchy and sticky.

best edge control products for black hair

And if it’s got alcohol, it can be devastating to your fragile baby hair. Enter the Design Essentials Sleek Edge Gel. 

It’s the best product for laying down your edges. I only use a fingertip amount and I’ve found that is enough to give a medium hold and keep those flyaways from messing up your look. So this is a product that gives you your money’s worth!

This Design Essential product is not just for the edges. It works amazingly well as a styling gel for short hair. 

how to lay edges black women

With nourishing emollients like glycerin and castor oil, this product keeps your hair sleek and frizz-free.

I also liked the fact that it’s cruelty-free. So that’s a good bonus point.


  • Does not harden the hair or leave flakes
  • Provides a good hold that is long lasting
  • Light fresh scent that is not overpowering
  • Works well with both wet and dry hair
  • Adds an intense shine to hair without making it look greasy


  • The gel can  be a bit sticky and itchy and not found in all retail stores
  • Size only available in 2.3oz

Tailiah Waajid Tight Hold Loc It Up Gel

Best Strong Hold Hair Gel For Natural Hair

hair styling gel for ladies

If you’re someone who loves experimenting with their hair, you should definitely try the Tailiah Waajid Tight Hold Loc It Up Gel.

As the name suggests, this gel offers a strong hold for creating locs and other tight hairstyles. 

But that’s not all it does. This hair styling gel helps define your natural curl pattern too.

And the best part? It’s completely free of alcohol and parabens. So you can use this gel on a sensitive scalp. 

It contains the goodness of rosemary, nettle extracts, and yarrow root, all of which help nourish your curls. The gel is also fantastic for women with colored hair.


  • ·        Does not harden the hair
  •          Provides a good hold that is long lasting
  • ·        Light fresh scent that adds a polished look to your hairstyle
  • ·        Work well for wet and dry hair
  • ·        Adds an intense shine


  • ·        The gel can  be a bit sticky and itchy and not found in all retail stores
  • ·        Size only available in 2.3oz

Mielle Organics Honey & Ginger Styling Gel

Best Organic Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair

best styling gel for black hair

Some styling gels give a firm hold. Others nourish your hair. This Mielle Organics Styling Gel manages to do both.

Even on day three, this gel keeps your hair looking good, without any need to wet it again.  

It contains a blend of 70 percent organic ingredients, including babassu oil, ginger, honey, and aloe vera extracts.

They keep frizz at bay and leave your curls smooth and shiny. The styling gel is also designed not to leave any crunchy residue in your hair after a while. 

The runny texture has a lot of slip too. So it can easily coat every strand of your curls.

We also loved the natural ginger scent, but some users found it a bit overwhelming.


  • ·        Made for nourishing and hydrating your hair
  • ·        Encourages healthier and stronger hair hold
  • ·       The ultimate curl definition and frizz reduction
  • ·        No artificial chemicals
  • ·        Leaves hair soft with no flakiness
  • ·        Doesn’t leave residue and is lightweight


  • ·        Scent may be very strong
  • ·        The gel may be too heavy on some hair textures

Aunt Jackie’s Flaxseed Elongating Curling Gel

Best Styling Gel For Shrinkage

styling gel for natural hair at clicks

The one problem with type 4 hair – shrinkage! The best solution? Aunt Jackie’s Flaxseed Elongating Curling Gel! Seriously, this gel is a blessing for all the ladies dealing with shrinking curls.

We were amazed by how the flaxseed, olive oil, and shea butter formula come together to nourish, elongate, and define your curls.

The styling gel is also great for finding out your natural curl pattern. 

The styling gel is also lightweight. So you don’t have to worry about product build-up, flaking, or greasiness. 

We should warn you, though. This gel contains mild hair relaxers – that’s how it gets your curls to elongate.

So if you’ve got fine hair or type 2 or 3 textures, we think you should steer clear of it. 


  • ·        Provides long lasting natural curls and waves
  • ·        No parabens
  • ·        Promotes hair growth and scalp health
  • ·        Super lightweight and gives your hair extra bounce
  • ·        Prevents hair loss and split ends
  • ·        Pleasant smell


  • Too much gel if applied, can turn hair crunchy and tacky.

Hicks Edge Control Gel

Best Styling Gel For Tapered Cut Hair

how to style women's hair with gel

This Hicks Edge Control Gel helps you set those pesky, wispy strands at the edge of your hairline. It doesn’t leave behind a greasy residue or white flakes or any sort.

If you’ve got tapered cuts and styles, this gel is perfect for keeping them under control. We like how it holds down edges for a long time, but rinses out easily too.

The gel-like formula is also free of problematic ingredients like gluten.


  • ·        It  holds the hair firmly in place
  • ·        Adds extra shine and is non flaky
  • ·        No greasy residue
  • ·        Rinses out easily
  • ·        Leaves your hair feeling healthier and shinier


  • The gel is too sticky and difficult to clean

Briogeo Curl Charisma Frizz Control Gel

Best Frizz-Control Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair

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what is the best gel for african american hair

Packed with amino acids and quinoa protein, this gel helps keep frizz at bay.

There’s keratin extracts that help strengthen hair while keeping them in control and rice extracts that increase its elasticity.

The hair gel offers a discreet, natural-looking finish and isn’t big on shine.

If you want something that gives at least a medium hold, you should go for this one.


  • ·        Provides a natural looking soft and shininess
  • ·        Provides high definition long lasting curls
  • ·       Nourishes curl textures
  •          Promotes curl formation
  • ·        Minimizes frizz 
  •          No stiffness ,crunch and stickiness
  • ·        Provides smooth and bouncy curls
  • ·        Vegan and cruelty free product


  •   Hair may dry up quicker than usual

FAQs – Best Styling Gel For Black Women’s Hair

How do you use styling gel on black hair?

We love ourselves some natural hair. But truth be told, it can get difficult to manage.
That’s why we’ve got a few tips for you. The first one, obviously, is to use the best styling gel for black women’s hair.
And this goes for any other product too. Use one that’s made for your hair texture. 
Psst. Want to know one lazy girl’s hack for caring for 4c hair? Wash it just once a week.
Yes, you heard that right. This prevents product build-up and keeps hair from drying out.
Besides, you can always use an apple cider vinegar rinse or dry shampoo in between washes. 
Yes, a good hair gel is a must while straightening or styling those curly coils. But that’s not it!
Always use a heat-protecting serum before you put that straightener on your tresses.
A pro tip, make sure you buy a straightening iron with ceramic plates. It keeps your hair safe from heat damage.
So you’ve got your cornrows ready, your braids done, and you’ve completed laying your edges using a styling gel too.
Before you finish, just double check that your hairstyle isn’t too tight. It can lead to breakage. 

How to use an edge control brush to slick back your baby hair?

So you’ve got your hairstyle in place with the help of the best styling gel for black women’s hair. But those darn edges won’t stay flat?
Here’s what you can do. A simple trick is to use both edge control products and a styling gel to tame those pesky flyaways.
Apply a thin coat of edge control, lay down your edges, and finish it off with maximum hold hair gel.
Voila! The edges stay flat for the whole day.
Another great idea is to set the hair gel in place using a bit of cold air. Just turn on your hair dryer.
Change the setting to cool. And let a blast of cool air dry down the styling gel on your edges.  It’s a great trick for dry, frizz-prone hair too.
Keeping your edges in control is easy. Trust us. You don’t need a fancy tool for that. A simple toothbrush should do the trick.

What is the best product for black women’s hair?

Hair gels, especially styling gels, are not all the same. Choose the right one, and you’ll have that hairstyle on fleek for hours.
Got the wrong one? Oops. Your coils are a sticky, crunchy mess!
So here are a few things to check if you want the best product for black women’s hair.
Hair type and texture: Do you have 3B hair or 4C textured hair? Believe it or not, it’s important.
If your hair’s on the curlier side, it will have low-porosity hair moisture levels (the hair doesn’t let moisture in easily).
So you’ll have to look for natural hair care gels that are lightweight and do not cause product build-up.
High porosity hair would need more frizz control.
Hair thickness: Got really thick coils? A lightweight gel might not be able to keep it in place for a longer time. So try something with a stronger hold. 
Alcohol: Many leave in conditioners and gels come with a tiny amount of alcohol. Just make sure they don’t contain lots of it.
Too much alcohol can strip your hair of moisture and disturb healthy hair’s pH levels. So this is one ingredient you should do your best to avoid.

What ingredients to avoid while buying styling gel for black hair?

One of the main ingredients you need to avoid when buying hair styling gels is alcohol, but then not all types of alcohol may be harmful for your hair.
There are few which can make your hair dry, like ethanol and ethyl, propanol, isopropyl, benzyl alcohol etc that you need to look for in hair gel labels and avoid using products that have these types of alcohol

Is Gorilla Snot Gel good for edges?

The Gorilla Snot Gel, also known as Moco de Gorilla Gel is well-known to be one of the best hair styling gels for edge control as it has good hair holding power. It is also available in different formulations, with different ranges of holding power, so the user can choose the one that suits her the best.
For the best edge holding power, choosing the Punk Gorilla Snot Gel is recommended, as it is known to have an “extreme hold”.

Let’s take a quick look at the different styling gel for 4c hair and see how the compare!

Top Styling Gel For Black Women’s HairMixed Chicks Styling GelKinky Curly Curling Custard Geltgin Rose Water Defining Styling GelOuidad Advanced Climate Control Heat & Humidity GelECOCO Eco Styler GelCurls Blueberry Bliss Curl Control JellyDesign Essentials Sleek Edge ControlMielle Organics Honey & Ginger Styling GelMielle Organics Honey & Ginger Styling GelHicks Edge Control GelBriogeo Curl Charisma Frizz Control GelTailiah Waajid Tight Hold Loc It Up Gel
PriceExpensiveAffordableSlightly ExpensiveAffordableVery AffordableVery ExpensiveExpensiveSlightly ExpensiveSlightly ExpensiveAffordableSlightly ExpensiveSlightly Expensive
Holding Power4/54.5/54.5/55/54.5/54.5/54.5/54.5/54.5/54.5/54.5/54.5/5
Moisturizing Power4/54.5/54.5/55/54/53.5/54.5/53.5/53.5/53.5/53.5/53.5/5
Suitability for 4c Hair4/54.5/54.5/54/54/54.5/54.5/55/55/55/54.5/54.5/5
Ingredients Quality4/54.5/55/54.5/55/53.5/55/54.5/54.5/54.5/54.5/54.5/5

What does Styling Gel do to natural hair?

A styling gel helps add curl definition to your natural hair.

It doesn’t matter if you’re starting out with wavy, curly, or coily tresses, these gels help emphasize your original curl pattern.

They contain polymers that force your hair to clump and crinkle in its original texture.

Another thing a styling gel is great at is stretching your hair. If you’re dealing with shrinkage, these products can help stretch your curls.

A lot of these gels are water-based, yet they are enriched with nourishing oils that lock in moisture in your hair shaft.

This seals your hair cuticles and smoothes them down, reducing frizz and giving a shiny appearance to curls.

The best thing about some of these styling gels for black women is that most of these brands are Black-owned!


And that’s the end of our list! We hope you continue to love your natural hair and try different styles with it.

But remember, a good styling gel is essential to keep your tresses looking sleek.

Pick the one that best suits your hair texture, needs, and budget.

With a little bit of edge control and hair gel, you can dazzle the world with your black girl magic.

Also Read:

Best Locking Gel For Dreads

Best Edge Control For Relaxed Hair

Best Leave-In Conditioner For 4C Hair

How To Make Faux Locs Less Frizzy

Major Hair Grease Benefits

What Are the Best Hair Towels for Black Women’s Hair

ECOCO Styler Professional Styling Gel

Using the best styling gel for black women's hair, you can create several hairstyles and tame frizzy, coily African American hair. The ECOCO Styler Professional Styling Gel is paraben-free and provides a strong hold for your hairstyles.

Product SKU: K2B2B2UU7772

Product Brand: ECOCO

Product Currency: USD

Product Price: $6

Price Valid Until: 2023-10-08

Product In-Stock: InStock

Editor's Rating:


  • The Eco styler gel has a strong hold
  • It leaves a lovely scent on hair
  • It helps slick back baby hairs


  • The gel can leaves flakes on hair
  • The gel isn't very moisturizing for 4c hair
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